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Graduation ceremonies set to begin for schools in Cortez area

Panther Stadium again will fill up for the Montezuma-Cortez High School graduation ceremony on May 19.
Graduation ceremonies take place in Cortez, Mancos and Dolores

More than 180 students will graduate high school in Montezuma County, and 196 students from Pueblo Community College campuses will receive degrees or certificates.

Following is a schedule:

Montezuma-Cortez High School: May 19, 6:30 p.m. at Panther Stadium; 107 graduates. Social studies teacher Chris Kelley will be the keynote speaker. The awards ceremony is May 17, 6:30 p.m. at the high school auditorium.

Dolores High School: May 19, 6 p.m. at the main gymnasium, 36 graduates. Michael Nielson is the keynote speaker. Erin Brown is the valedictorian, and Shiloh Burger is the salutatorian. Operation Graduation, a safe and chaperoned after-party for graduates, will take place at the Montezuma County Fairgrounds from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Mancos High School: May 22, 3:30 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center, 33 graduates.

Southwest Open School: May 25, 6 p.m. outdoors on the west side of the campus, 12 graduates. Graduate speaker is Aleece Brown, and Ute Mountain Ute Gina Lopez is the guest speaker. On May 26 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. SWOS will host its end-of-the-year barbecue at Joe Rowell Park in Dolores. Graduates, current students and past students and their families are welcome. The meal is free and is being catered by the Wigglin’ Pig.

Pueblo Community College: May 14, 10 a.m. Montezuma-Cortez High School auditorium. There are 196 graduates from the campuses in Cortez, Durango and Bayfield.

Out of the Cortez campus, two bachelor of science degrees in nursing were earned along with 56 associate degrees and 94 certificates and mini-certificates. From the Durango campus there are 10 association degrees, and 44 certificates and mini certificates. From the Bayfield campus, there are three association degrees and 14 certificates and mini-certificates.

Twenty-seven graduates are high school seniors participating in PCC’s concurrent enrollment program – 15 from Cortez, 11 from Durango and one from Bayfield. Concurrent enrollment students earn college credit while still attending high school. Their school district covers the cost of tuition.

Gold Academy: June 3 at 5 p.m., Fort Lewis College for students from Durango, Cortez and Pagosa Springs.